Through These Wounds

Quote

manofsorrows-memling-ca1490 copyThrough these wounds, as in a light-filled opening, we can see the entire mystery of Christ and of God: his Passion, his earthly life – filled with compassion for the weak and the sick – his incarnation in the womb of Mary.  And we can retrace the whole history of salvation: the prophecies – especially about the Servant of the Lord, the Psalms, the Law and the Covenant; to the liberation from Egypt, to the first Passover and to the blood of the slaughtered lambs; and again from the Patriarchs to Abraham, and then all the way back to Abel, whose blood cried out from the earth.  All of this we can see in the wounds of Jesus, crucified and risen; with Mary, in her Magnificat, we can perceive that, “His mercy extends from generation to generation” (cf. Lk 1:50).

-Pope Francis, homily for Divine Mercy Sunday 2015

Divine Mercy Sunday

q01Many question in their hearts: why a Jubilee of Mercy today? Simply because the Church, in this time of great historical change, is called to offer more evident signs of God’s presence and closeness. This is not the time to be distracted; on the contrary, we need to be vigilant and to reawaken in ourselves the capacity to see what is essential. This is a time for the Church to rediscover the meaning of the mission entrusted to her by the Lord on the day of Easter: to be a sign and an instrument of the Father’s mercy (cf. Jn 20:21-23).

-Pope Francis, homily for first vespers of Divine Mercy Sunday, April 11, 2015

Happy Divine Mercy Sunday, everyone! This is a day of great grace for the world, because the graces of forgiveness and love, which poured from our Savior’s wounds on the Cross, Continue reading

Discover Your Sacred Story

tumblr_mhwetq3sCl1rrutr7o1_400Don’t you just love it when God keeps reminding us of something everywhere we turn.  Yesterday the Holy Father announced an extraordinary holy year, a Jubilee Year of Mercy. This morning during the Office of Readings we couldn’t help but smile at the second reading from St. Gregory of Nazianzen, which was all about mercy:

The Lord of all asks for mercy, not sacrifice, and mercy is greater than myriads of fattened lambs. Let us then show him mercy in the persons of the poor and those who today are lying on the ground, so that when we come to leave this world they may receive us into everlasting dwelling places, in Christ our Lord himself, to whom be glory for ever and ever. 

And then the Gospel at Mass confirmed it again as we heard the publican’s humble prayer “God, be merciful to me, a sinner.”

The holy year will be organized by the Pontifical Council for the Promotion of the New Evangelization because, the Holy Father says, it is the mission of the Church to bring everyone to the Gospel of Mercy.  Truly, to encounter Mercy is to encounter Christ, Who is Mercy itself.  The devil lies to us, telling us that our mistakes and the sins we have committed throughout our lives have the final word.  The truth is Christ has the final word, and it is a word of mercy – if we are willing to accept it and turn from sin.

But how can we tell others of the renewing power of God’s mercy if we ourselves haven’t experienced it?  We can’t.  Everyone’s life has been touched by the merciful love of God, Continue reading

Mercy and Forgiveness

640px-Pompeo_Batoni_003It feels a little strange to say “happy Friday” in Lent, but today is actually a day to celebrate, at least, celebrate while still keeping the proper spirit of this penitential season.  Friday the 13th need not always have negative connotations.  Today is the second anniversary of the election of Pope Francis, and today marks the beginning of “24 Hours for the Lord,” an initiative of the Pope to encourage everyone to go to confession and encounter the God of Mercy Who seeks to heal our wounds and restore our broken hearts with His grace.  He also announced today that a special Jubilee Year of Mercy will begin Continue reading

Jesus cleanses our hearts with mercy

Can you believe we’re already beginning the Third Week of Lent?  Sometimes it passes so quickly that it’s over before you find your Lenten “groove”.  As we approach the midway point of this season it’s a good time to re-evaluate our Lenten practices.  Have we been faithful to prayer, fasting, and almsgiving thus far?  Do we need to make some changes – either step things up a notch, or dial them down because we’ve set up unrealistic expectations?

Cleansing_the_temple2In his Angelus address Pope Francis spoke about the Gospel we heard at Mass today, Jesus cleansing the temple. As we examine our hearts today let’s remember that Jesus is the one to cleanse our hearts of all the idols and vices that want to crowd God out.  The Holy Father tells us that when we invite Jesus to cleanse our hearts He will do it with mercy and tenderness.  Here is his Angelus Address for today:

Dear brothers and sisters, Good morning!

Today’s Gospel today presents the episode of the expulsion of the vendors from the temple (Jn 2: 13-25). Jesus ‘made a whip out of cords and drove them all out of the temple, with the sheep and oxen’ (Jn 2:15), the money, everything. This gesture aroused strong reactions, in the people and in the disciples. Clearly, it appeared as a Continue reading

Spiritual Combat

Duccio di Buoninsegna, Temptation on the MountToday, in his Angelus address for the First Sunday of Lent, Pope Francis spoke about the spiritual combat we undertake during this Lenten season.  To that end, we give you this link to several prayers recommended by Fr. Gabriel Amorth, chief exorcist of Rome, to be prayed for protection against evil.  Five Prayers Recommended by an Exorcist to Combat Evil

Here is the Holy Father’s Angelus Address for today:

Dear brothers and sisters,

Last Wednesday, Lent began with the Rite of Ashes, and today is the first Sunday of this liturgical time that makes reference to the 40 days Jesus spent in the desert, after his baptism in the Jordan River. In today’s Gospel, St. Mark writes: “The Spirit drove Jesus out into the desert, and he remained in the desert for forty days, tempted by Satan. He was among wild beasts, and the angels ministered to him” (1,12-13). With these simple words, the evangelist describes the test voluntarily faced by Jesus, before beginning his Messianic mission. It is a test in which the Lord leaves victorious and that prepares Him to announce the Gospel of the Kingdom of God. He, in those 40 days of solitude, confronted Satan “in close combat”, He unmasks his temptations and conquers him. And through Him, we have all conquered but we must protect this victory in our daily lives. Continue reading

God is in love with our smallness

457f48651fa02f2038f24e32db4b11ccMerry Christmas, everyone! With grateful hearts, we are praying to Our Infant Savior for each of you on this joyful day.  Thank you for reading our blog, listening to our radio show, supporting us through our Nonnavita Soap, and, most especially, thank you for praying for us.  May the joy and wonder of the Nativity, which filled the hearts of Our Lady and St. Joseph, fill your hearts, too.

Here is Pope Francis’ homily from Midnight Mass:

“The people who walked in darkness have seen a great light; those who dwelt in a land of deep darkness, on them has light shined” (Is 9:1).  “An angel of the Lord appeared to [the shepherds] and the glory of the Lord shone around them” (Lk  2:9). This is how the liturgy of this holy Christmas night presents to us the birth of the Continue reading